Category Archives: Ignite Me!

SUCCESS is failure spelled backward!

One thing being a single parent has taught me is that some things are never an option…..

Many nights sleep before midnight  IS NOT an option

Some days peace and quiet IS NOT an option

On most evenings rest IS NOT an option (these days you can’t even microwave meals quick enough)

……when you have someone depending on you FAILURE is not an option….

I stumbledupon this hope-bursting short video from Inc.com. check it out…then pass it along!

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Pardon my Foul Mouth

There is a word that you don’t use that I love. You’ve heard that it is bad, negative, and at times, a bad four-letter word…….

…..and yet, as I sit in my peaceful living room watching the sunrise, tranquil and serene, it’s the only thing bouncing off the walls of my zenned out brain!

HATE.

Pure and wonderful. God-given and life enriching. Wondrous, bountiful, world-changing HATE.

Why?

God knew when He created you that a good amount of hate in the soul is a blessed puppet string for the soul!

HATE focuses your mind.

HATE keeps you awake when you’re in a battle for your life.

HATE is at the essence of fearing God!

HOW you use hatred is the determinant of whether you are a crusader, tyrant, or couch-comfy creep!

What will you hate today?

I HATE that children in Africa are starving and dying because of drought.

I HATE laziness.

I HATE self-pity.

Will I writhe in hatred against any of YOUR lifestyle today? Hate whispers in your ear: “GET UP AND DO SOMETHING!”

Chose to crusade before you ease onto your pillow tonight.

DON’T MAKE ME HATE YOU!  🙂

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Why you Shouldn’t Make Goals (and Why I changed my Blog Title)

The most powerful question you can ever answer in life is WHY?

Not a sentence or a thought-just a soul probing why. Think back to your childhood, every instruction you received was always met with a defiant “why do I have to_____”

As we progress out of childhood we are trained to forget about the why and focus on the what.

  • What type of education you should get?
  • What political platforms you should support?
  • What type of lifestyle is normal?
  • What goals you should have?

Our natural childlike curiosity gets assaulted so often that we find ourselves lost in the zombie matrix of right/wrong, acceptable/unacceptable, do/don’t, sit/stand, and obey without question. 

So many of us make goals for the sake of having goals. It makes us feel safe, comfortable, and responsible. I agree that goals are good-after they’ve been stripped naked and examined. Any good action can be end up with the worst consequences. Dont be fooled, smart people make stupid mistakes all the time!

How do you begin the strip tease of your life? Ask WHY!

Why is beautiful because it addresses your heart and your intentions. It exposes your motives and your mentality. Asking why is certain to uncover things that you don’t want to see about yourself but are guaranteed to help you improve areas of your life. 

Answer these two questions:

  • What are you going to do tomorrow afternoon?
  • Why are you going to do that tomorrow afternoon?

Your answer to the second question is likely to be lengthier and longer to compose.

Your going to work….do you still know why you work there?                                                                                                                                                       You plan on going to hit the gym to burn off that sweet potato cheese pie your having today…but why work it off if you’re just going to have more pie on Wednesday?                                                                                                                                              You’re having dinner with your  boyfriend/girlfriend…do you still want to be with them or are you just wasting time?

We spend our days thinking of the things we want to achieve and some of the goals that will get us there. Often times our goals become a way of life that never brings about an end goal but instead just becomes a new source of frustration and hopelessness.

For a long time I have kept serious and well-thought goals, it’s boring! My outlook on life has changed because instead of making goals for the sake of goals-I want to focus on the me of the future.

Instead of setting a goal for accomplishment why not begin with taking an inventory of who YOU are and who you want to become. A better alternative, and more fun. When I think of my blog I could focus on a niche, or a set schedule of posts, or generate content that is innovative or edgy but the easiest decision is to follow my heart.

Being an epic father is a better vision than being a great blogger. I am starting to see a vision the man I want to be. If I can follow this vision then I will always content to post, stories that inspire, and successful ministry in my home.

 Am I telling you to drop your goals…NO. I’m telling you that you should never start out with a goal until you allow yourself to be a child who asks WHY and develop a vision of the YOU that you were born to be.

Develope a fun and healthy obsession with your potential. Don’t take a single step until your WHY is firmly established. Don’t try to hate sweet potato cheese pie-that’s impossible!!!!!! Instead envision yourself with abs, a firm chest, or a silm waist-work on the vision until you can see it. Get excited over you! Can you see yourself with a college degree yet? Goto a graduation! Do what you have to do to get more excited about your life than anything else in life!

Here’s a great video to help you get started discovering your WHY

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How to Look Up When Everything around, Inside, In Front of, and Behind You is Down?

“Saved alone. What shall I do.”

Those are the words on the telegram you see. Written from Anna Spafford to her husband Horatio, she had witnessed the drowning deaths of their four children, Annie, Maggie, Bessie and Tanetta Spafford while they were sailing to England. Horatio was already making his way through the valley of despair at the loss of his business when he suffered this blow. He had been a successful attorney and businessman in Chicago who, in the famous Great Fire of Chicago in 1871, lost everything that he had in one night.

A man trying to care for his family

Horatio made the best move that he thought would benefit his family, he arranged to move back to England. He had some unfinished business to attend to so he decided to send his wife ahead with their children.

Consider this misery….a man that sought to provide for his family, seeking to do the best that he could, made a decision that sent them to their death. How do you deal with it when everything around you is dark, cold, and miserable??

You may know a thing or two about misery. Have you ever been so tired of crying that you’re eyes are soar? Sometimes life is so intense that you despair to wake up and fear going to sleep. There are seasons in this human experience that couldn’t compare to a horror movie if Steven King himself directed it. Some pains are bitter, stinging in the center of your soul.

There are some things you learn when life becomes your prison. When sunlight becomes your captor, emptiness your reality, and tears your food, you cling to God and plead that in His mercy wisdom would fill your mind just to survive.

Keeping your head above water

  • Cry                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Crying is a healthy and natural way to express emotions. If you didn’t cry what tears would there be for God to wipe away?
  • Stop Crying                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Don’t let mourning be your identity. You have to find a laugh. I know that some situations don’t allow for it but most times a good laugh is great medicine for the soul. I keep a playlist on my mp3 player just for rough moments when I really need to laugh. 5 Minutes after you die all this will be over and you will wish you had trusted more, prayed more, loved more! Live as passionately and light weight as you can HERE AND NOW!
  • Stretch                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       So often we pray and ask God for strength to make it and comfort to pull thru and then we make one mistake: we just sit there. We ask but don’t expect. You have to stretch. Get up from bed, don’t let the tv take your mind away, eat something…..the things you need to do will usually be the things you don’t want to do! Stretch and do what you know is right! 
  • Be Lonely, Not Needy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Life’s trauma is sudden and devastating. We become so aware of our need for companionship and begin to hate the solitude. Often times, if we aren’t careful we can develop a co-dependency on others to hold us together. Lean on someone but allow God to be God and allow no other person to sit on His throne!                                                                                                                                                                                                            
  • Act like an infant                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My little girl  doesn’t worry very much. As a matter of fact, she is so carefree that it makes me feel quite good! She is so confident in her dad. She knows that all my resources, all my strength, all my power is reserved for her. Allow God to be your Daddy. Get personal!

 

When Horatio Spafford would later cross the sea, at the location where his children died, he penned the hymn ‘It is Well With my Soul’. Here is a clip of my favorite version.

 

“It is in the quiet crucible of our personal private sufferings
that our noblest dreams are born and Gods greatest gifts are given,
and often given in compensation for what we’ve been through.”

– Wintley Phipps

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The Epic Guide to World-Changing Anger

Here’s some advice: if your Pastor, Minister, Bishop or other confused spiritual leader tells you to flee from anger, slap them and run! Run for your life…literally! Anger is, in a word, AWESOME!! Out of all the wondrous gifts you’ve ever enjoyed anger is the one that served you well the whole time you complained about it.

“EVERY EMOTION THAT GOD GAVE TO MAN IS RIGHT WHEN USED WITHIN THE RIGHT CONTEXT IN THE RIGHT MANNER!!!”- JAY ADAMS

Misdirected anger is missed opportunity

Regardless what has happened to you, who deserted you, what you missed out on, or who you loved…ITS A TOTAL WASTE OF TIME TO BREW OVER THINGS THAT DON’T BOTHER ANYBODY BUT YOU!! For every second you waste imploding or exploding you could be making a massive improvement to your best asset…YOU! Think of anger like a check engine light on your car dashboard. Something is wrong, here is an opportunity to identify and zero in on one of your many flaws!

Make your anger a sniper rifle, not a machine gun!

One of the most epic blessings of being done wrong is that you can go out and find at least 20 unknowing bambi deers just staring in the headlights of an oncoming disappointment just begging for your wisdom! Take the lessons you gain, along with the stomach boiling emotions that go along with it, and develop your own tribe. did you get cheated on? so sorry! Why not gather some righteous indignation and pour your disappointment into developing those who would benefit from your epic stories and the wisdom you have gleaned. Get a niche going and help people. The world needs you! Don’t breed jerks who are horrified by your teary-eyed stories of one-sided hurt and why-me-isms. Be honest, you weren’t perfect. Bear your responsibility and bless the people whom God brings your way!

Anger destroys the who’s but totally obliterates the what’s.

This is the jem: ANGER WILL KEEP YOU ALIVE when life is at it’s worst! On one side of the coin, anger and frustration can cause fear, violence, homicide, and suicide.

 The right channeling of anger, rooted in a kick-butt purpose-driven identity, has given birth to great leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr.’s who was angry for a great length of time during the civil rights struggle. If you were beaten, bit by dogs, spit on, and called degrading names wouldn’t you be angry? But, look at how he used it! Brilliant!    

 Whatever is holding you back, staggering you, slowing your life’s progress, clouding your dreams, ANGER will break walls down!!!

Anger will either be an erosive ulcer agitating force within and around you , or, a massively creative and innovative energy that will manifest some of the greatest potential you’ve never dreamed the world would see coming from you!

  • Ask yourself ‘What, not who, is my character flaw?                                                                                                                                  
  •  ‘What is my most difficult memory to think about?’                                                                                                                   
  •  ”What is the one thing I would change about the world around me if I could?’

By attacking an issue, blockage, or obstacle you challenge yourself to get innovative and, most of all, productive!

Anger keeps you sharp, raises your awareness, feeds determination, and makes epic stories of world domination for your grandchildren…..

In closing I want to make a toast to you in the words of my famed hero, Edmond Dantes from The Count of Monte Cristo as he toasted to his own unbeknownst son after his brush with death (an epic movie indeed!):

 

“Life is a storm, my young friend. You will bask in the sunlight one moment, be shattered on the rocks the next. What makes you a man is what you do when that storm comes. You must look into that storm and shout as you did in Rome. Do your worst, for I will do mine! Then the fates will know you as we know you: as Albert Mondego, the man!”
Alexandre Dumas

FREE download from world renown speaker and counselor Jay Adams on How to Handle Anger

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You Can’t Be Abundant and Fat at the Same Time: An Explosive Approach to Having an Abundant Mentality

I might have seemed like a hypocrite when I told my friend that I have an abundant mentality. I say that because all that people have heard from me lately is that I am selling off or disposing of many of my possessions, living on less, carrying less things around, even closing credit card accounts. How in the world is that ‘Abundant‘ when I am dumping so much? Isn’t the Abundant life characterized by having lots of stuff!??

Nope, Noway, not at all, rubbish!

  1. Having More will always take up MORE of your time
  2. Having More will cost you more to maintain it
  3. Having More for More’s sake just cultivates selfishness

The Sad Truth

Most people are deathly afraid of harnessing any type of abundance. Why? They have never experienced anything out of the norm and don’t know how to handle the thought that they can be overwhelmingly blessed. Their FAT mentality is often expressed in two ways:

  • “I can’t do _______________. I’m not qualified. I’m nobody.”
  • “BUT_____________”

While they innovate the latest “why me” “who me” “not me” excuses, the rest of the world suffers, missing out on God-given potential just waiting to be unleashed.

All of this is fat. Fat people are weighed down by the gluttonous mass of self-focus, doubt, and are complacently dying off in someday-ville.

What is an Abundant mentality?

Definition of ABUNDANT:

amply supplied : abounding <an area abundant with bird life>

Think about that! To live abundantly is to be amply supplied FOR a purpose or reason.

Abundant Mathematics: Abundant provision (x)   +   Unique calling (y)    =  awesome anti-suck life never to be forgotten

  • Abundant Minds Do One Thing

Think of the Google vs Yahoo saga. Yahoo has 140+ homepage features to click on and yet has had it’s butt kicked by Google who features a page of…well, nothing much at all. Just a search engine. Of course there are other features and aspects of Google but at the end of the day they offer…searches!

Abundant Minds identify their uniqueness and boast about it! Weird is good, normal is overloaded with fear, complacency, and boredom! Normal is fat!

  • Abundant Minds say ‘NO’ often

Every ‘No’ is a ‘Yes’ to something else. Those who learn to prioritize their time yield the greatest results in everything they do!

Are you one of those people whose family ALWAYS calls on you for something? Do friends come to talk to you about their problems ALL the time?

Life Lesson #1: There will always be someone, somebody, or something that beckons for your attention.

Tim Ferris advises that there are Benefits to brushing people off and that IF YOU ARE SINGLE it’s probably because of your choices. (both good reads that I encourage you to check out!)

  • Abundant Minds aren’t slaves to anyone or anything

How can God ever pour out blessings upon you so that you can impact the world when your mind and heart are insatiably feasting on the things of this world?

Have you heard of the low information diet? I dare you to take a 24 hour fast from facebook, twitter, email, and text messaging. See where you are after that and if you are free or in bondage.

If you’re like me and have a history of having financial debt as your master i commend to you ManvsDebt’s Unautomate Your Finances. Though I am an affiliate with Adam’s business, I have purchased the program and I am successfully implementing it. Easy to read and very affordable, I believe in this product.

  • Abundant Minds spend time like money

Life is short. Wasting time is essentially wasting life. The people who go to bed happy are the ones who wake up knowing what they need to accomplish each day and pursue the fulfillment of walking in their purpose and wont settle for less. I’m not talking about dredging around arbitrarily putting out fires and servicing all the needs of those around you.

Here’s at tip I got from Tim Ferris: take the total amount of income you made last year (or ,if your unemployed, total yearly income you wish you made) and drop the last three digits. This is your hourly worth. Spend every moment asking “is this worth my time?”

For example, John makes $50, 025 per year. John’s hourly value is a whopping $50 per hour. Will John spend his time on video games, surfing the net, or listening to his best friend’s girl trouble for an hour? No!

What is your time worth?

Learn to keep a schedule. Check voice-mail, encourage friends to respect your time limitations, cut conversations short that are going nowhere, especially gossip!! Make relationships more purposeful: start an accountability group or get together with a partner once or twice a week  and ask each other these 14 Accountability Questions that Could Have Saved Tiger Woods Grief  I got from RevTrev.

Take a step back……

Are you proud of all you did yesterday?

Did you wake up excited about today?

Name one thing that you would be doing right now if you had 30 million dollars in your bank account. (hint, pay attention)

 

A Helpful Product for you:

Tammy Stroble is a strong woman who quit her job, moved to Portland, Oregon, and has built sustainable wealth for her family along with adding simplicity to her families life.

This e-book comes with a free preview and, one of my favorite features, a how-to guide on making an additional $200 per month.

Click here for more information and a FREE preview

For more dynamic tips and tricks:

5 Boundary-Setting Tips for the Work Obsessed

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Deadly Techniques from the School of Emotional Kung Fu!

Here I am trying to think of what to write not knowing what to write but insisting that I write……What that means to me is that I have been able to be consistent in what I set out to do. I don’t feel like writing now but I do it because I made the decision to do it in the past. This is one of the secret Shaolin fighting monk techniques of mastering your own life….a.k.a. how I started to take responsibility for my own life!

Three years ago……(really cool scooby doo flashback music playing)

I was fresh into a divorce and enrolled in counseling for the worst depression I have ever experienced. I had taken a leave of absence from ministry (I am a Minister. Don’t get all weird on me!). I was maintaining but not sustaining anything. It was hard to get out of bed in the morning. I would wake up around 6am and just lay there until 8 or 9. No tv or music. Just lying there I’d cry, look up, try to fall back asleep, sometimes smoke a cigarette….anything to escape or deny my reality. My life wasn’t my life, it was an auto-piloted chamber of torment…on two legs!

My Choices: Escape, Evade, or Explode!

One lesson I learned about mental and emotional isolation….it’s lonely. When you’re alone you are always outnumbered (that’s a good quote for a fb status or tweet eh!? -bowing-). My breakthrough started when I realized a profound truth after visiting a very dear friend who was in the hospital on life support. He had battled with alcoholism for most of his adult life and had seen tremendous struggle throughout his life with other issues, but despite all this he was a very good man who I respected. His family was around his bed and I heard his daughter make a remark that I will never forget. She said: “It’s his own fault, he put his self there.” And just like that, they left the room and went on with their day.

What lesson did I learn? In the face of your own personal devastation and trials people either don’t care or don’t have enough capacity to carry you along with their own problems. The majority of people are too preoccupied with their own issues to weigh in on yours.

It’s a waste of time to look for people to feel sorry for you! And guess what else? It’s a waste of time to feel sorry for yourself.

I began to take responsibility for my recovery and get awesome! It’s been a road of making decisions and managing those decisions. In time I have learned that the battle with depression, much like most inner battles, never ceases but attacks in waves. It’s like those good ol kung fu movies where waves of assassins would come and attack a master. The greater the master the more the attacks! Well I must be a Grand Master because the attacks are many and…yet…I am still standing strong! I have continually kicked the crap out of my struggles with esteem, depression, anger, and impatience by secret techniques acquired by years of awesome life design techniques I’ve picked up and committed myself to.

#1 Soul Care “You don’t have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body”- C.S. Lewis

My first step in training to become a Master began with seeing how weak and powerless I was. If your drowning in the middle of the ocean then you need to be ready to receive help…if you don’t want to die. I got counseling from Todd, a great counselor at CCEF. Life deals some devastating hits to us and the place of impact is your soul. It must be cared for and protected as you do your own eyes.  If I pluck at your eyes you instinctively guard your face, well Daniel-son you must instinctively care for your own soul!!

Make a declaration of absolute war against every impulse of the soul to be violent towards other people! That means selfishness, pride, dishonestly, falsehood, deception, manipulation, etc.

#2 Embrace Change, expect failure, calm the heck down!

Change has always been hardest for me to handle. Positive change or negative change, I’ve never liked either. I like to remain in my comfort zone. That’s not safe. Change is always going to come and life has lots of turns and bends. Guess what? Change can be very good!!   Not always, but most times breakdowns are optional! Your reaction to life events is a result of preparation and perspective.

Paralyzed by failure, or the fear thereof?

Those circumstances that paralyze you can lead to breakthroughs! John Maxwell wrote a book called Failing Forward. It’s a totally great read to change your perspective on failure! I highly recommend it.

make change a part of your regular routine.

You will fail and make mistakes, pressure will be a regular occurrence. The payout: a vaccination against future uncontrollable circumstances that would otherwise shock and intimidate you.

#3 Vision

Honestly speaking, I have days where I am too excited to stay in bed. I have plans and goals that are so big, so overwhelmingly lofty, so full of potential to break people out of their own monotonous existence that I get poised in my purpose and get moving.

You need a vision plan! (I’ll be writing more in this soon in my post on world domination n 2011. Don’t forget to subscribe)

For instance, today I am doing my annual review from Chris Guilebeau and adding some notes for 2011 Vision plan. also check out the Creating a Legacy Project

#4 Dethrone Every Freakin Person you meet

One of my biggest struggles was with making idols out of people. I picked up a copy of Ed Welch‘s book When People are Big and God is Small and I have never been the same. When we learn to see people as fallible, fallen, and fractured just like us we get empowered to love and not be leveled by our relationships. Here‘s a synopsis of the book by Justin Taylor.

#5 Theme Music

Yep! I said theme music. I have seen and experienced first hand the effect music can have on you. Music can lift your spirit, calm your soul, or heat up a steamy moment (you know what I’m talking about!). You need the right playlist to get you amped, focused, and motivated.  Check out this article on music’s effects on the brain

My motivational music is a mixture of drama, bass (Hans Zimmer rocks!), and worship

Of course this is not the exhaustive guide to conquering depression. Not even close. This is my story of a battle, a struggle, a besieging of my soul that I have fought against (was that not the best Shakespearean comment you ever heard!?). My hope is that as you read and think about what’s been said here you will get girded up with your own techniques to be a conqueror in fighting for your life…and win!

For exciting dynamite kick-butt advice read 10 Resolutions for Mental Heath here

Note/Disclaimer: If you feel depressed or think you have a mental/emotional condition I encourage you to seek counsel immediately.  Go to a doctor or find a counselor here if you are in or near Philadelphia. If you want to hurt yourself or someone else PLEASE stop and get emergency help. THE WORLD NEEDS YOU!

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Quit, Crack, or Cry: The Song of a Broken Parent

If you don’t know the story of the former homeless single-dad turned stockbroker Chris Gardner you need to see this. Warning: keep tissues nearby.  He lived in bathrooms, motels, and train cars. He routinely lived in circumstances that would make you want to quit but the key is he held on to his conviction to be a great father and his attitude toward success.  I intend to identify with his success sometime soon as well.It will touch your heart but what I love about his story is that its very easy to identify with this man. If you feel like giving up stay encouraged. You are not alone.

Also check out Ever Feel Like Giving Up?

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THIS IS YOUR LIFE

A great pic from Jennifer.  Can I say three words to make it simple?  DO SOMETHING….NOW!! I don’t think we are lacking for creativity, resources, or opportunity, what’s missing is the NOW factor. Start pursuing the things that have been dancing around your mind. You want to quit your job, make a plan today. Still looking to lose weight, get full on all the right foods. Stop yielding energy and time to thoughts that wont go away and do something about it!

There’s a resolution: Everything that comes to my mind that is true,  noble,  right, pure,  lovely, and admirable I will act on. No more waiting.

It may seem like such a hard thing to do but, believe it or not, the person you are as of today started with little things that you started and stopped doing and…..bam! Here is the current you! Get rid of that old baggage that you carry around. Start making ripples in your own heart and mind. Be hungry for good ideas all the time.

You will see that for every step you take, for every investment of your energy you make into being obedient to your ‘marching orders’ those internal ripples will become waves of transformation! Go out each day daring to think for yourself. Do something risky with your life, be afraid to fear,  and enjoy the ride!

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What are you waiting for?

Right now…….!

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